Summary: I read a lot of reviews before I bought this camera. I have VISTA so the software that came with it did not work. I had to go download VISTA compatible software from the Microsoft website. It wasn't as easy as it sounded..... but I'm no techie. Once that was done I skipped all the Microsoft Messenger stuff, turned on Skype and it worked!! I don't have anything against the Messenger, I just did not want to have to learn something new and I like Skype.
Summary: This is a nice camera and works very well with Skype. However, it is wide angle, and claims to have a digital zoom feature. Unfortunately, the digital zoom works only with the Microsoft application and is not part of the basic camera controls, so it cannot be used when the camera is used with Skype.
Summary: After nearly giving up on this item while trying to use it on Windows Live Messenger, I decoded a problem that many others seem to have had--the error message "You have another process/camera program running. Turn it off..." I knew I didn't have another camera program running but after three hours of installing and un-installing, I was ready to throw in the towel. My wife opened up the Windows Live "tools" pull down and went to "Audio and video options.
Summary: easy to set up, attaches to laptop or free-standing monitor. good sound and video. worth it for price, only criticism is the automatic follow feature zoooms in and out almost continuously for no apparent reason.
Excerpt: Microsoft seem to have a good hand on the computing market, and webcams are part of this, the reason for Microsoft producing webcams is because of its instant messaging program, Windows Live Messenger which has millions of users worldwide, a large proportion of these using webcams to communicate with their friends.